Maeve Collins

Artist, Researcher, Educator, Producer.

As a socially engaged artist, current practice has evolved into research of systems of justice- natural and man made, gender relations and equality. A commitment to dwelling has lead to the use of emplacement as a political and poetic strategy to address forms of social and environmental alienation.

I am interested in exploring how socially engaged practices can operate and intervene in systems of social control, such as the Irish judicial system to produce spaces of liberation and empathy. This involves an enquiry into the value of works produced from ‘being with’ error as a relevant position. In a search of new democracies I am interested in  Mikhail Bakhtin’s writings on laughter as an antidote to fear.

Current research in collaboration with Julie Griffiths and members of the NWCI and a gathering local community of interest involve the sensory process of producing dough. The folding and rising of dough is being researched  as a metaphor, to represent the progression of time, and as symbolic of the traditional labour of women. A focus on kneading relates to contemporary thought, the act of labour and Constance Markievicz who ran a soup kitchen in Liberty Hall during the 1913 Lockout and took part in the 1916 Rising.

A stranded art practice involves sensory appreciation, participation, and movement in it’s research, process and delivery. Trans-disciplinary works have taken the form of installations; photo works sound pieces and movement works often being time based and site specific.  Work has explored an interest in the tangibility of life forms, objects, places and ideas, and how they can resist their absorption into the elusiveness of the connections they evoke, in effect keeping their potentials to generate further connections. An interest in meeting places and connections lead to working in collaboration with dancers, other artists and the public in participatory artworks, local community of interest groups and trans local artists’ collectives.

An active member of the Ground Up Artists Collective, my practice is often informed and formed by my relationships in the rural. I am currently engaged in community initiatives to promote access to and engagement with the arts in North Clare, including the moving of the Fetac 5 and 6 Courses in Ennistymon to it’s main street location, in conjunction with Bairbre Geraghty and Ennistymon VEC. I was a co- founder of the user art initiative ‘Participle Notes’, which is a platform for socially engaged (artists) to meet and share practice. Receiving support and Awards from Ealaíon na Gaeltachta, Bealtine, Age and Opportunity (Seedlings Award 2015), Clare and Laois Art’s Offices, Foras na nGael, The Arts Council among others and from communities of interest is greatly appreciated.